A little tidbit about the freshly minted Prime Minister of Japan:

Just five years later, Kan was forced to resign from his leadership of the DPJ over another failure to pay [into the national pension fund]. This time, Kan made formal penance: He shaved his head, put on a Buddhist monk’s robes, and traveled to the traditional pilgrimage destination of Shikoku island and its 88 temples. It worked. Japan’s comeback kid, he remained a senior figure inside the DPJ and served as deputy prime minister and finance minister in the Hatoyama cabinet.

Kan will be the fifth prime minister since Junichiro Koizumi resigned in September of 2006. That’s a turnover more rapid than usual, but Japan tends to run through prime ministerships pretty quickly. It’s pretty rare for one to last more than a couple years. Especially when they’re not members of the traditionally leading party, the LDP, as Kan and his predecessor are not.

Category: Newsroom

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2 Responses to Kan’s Penance

  1. Kirk says:

    Maybe once a week or so, I check up on the website for the Japan Times. I’m guessing you do, too.

    One thing I learned: Japan has the death penalty. The method is hanging. They don’t publicize it though, which is why you don’t hear about it much.

    Also intersting: our oil spill doesn’t seem to make the news there. A quick look reveals nothing about it, which is okay by me. (I’m sick of hearing about it.)


  2. Nanani says:

    International news here in Japan, both print and other media, is very -very- limited compared to what other countries are used to.

    The fact that satelite packages provide BBC, CNN, and any number of other international news services, not to mention The Internet, might have something to do with that.

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